Top 7 Best Water Skis | 2020 Reviews (Airhead, O’Brien)

Water skiing is much more complicated when you don’t know the equipment that is needed to get into the activity. Even so, it is still a perfect summer event that most family’s do when they’re on their getaway.

You’ll eventually get overwhelmed by the factors that you need to know and understand to buy a pair of skis finally.

If you don’t like to rent water skis anymore and you want to have your gear, you came into the right place.

Top 7 Best Water Skis in the Market Today

Here, we list down the seven best skis that are some of the best out there today.

  1. S-1300 Combo Water Ski Made by Airhead
  2. Celebrity Combination Waterskis Made by O’Brien
  3. Supersport Combo Water skis Made by CWB
  4. Blast Combo Water skis Made by HO Sports
  5. Reactor Combination Water Skis Made by O’Brien
  6. Hydroslide Legend Waterskis Made by Nash
  7. Full Throttle Traditional Combo Water Skis Made by Absolute Outdoor

#1. S-1300 Combo Ski by Airhead – Best Overall Water Ski​

S-1300 Combo Ski by Airhead

Specifications:

  • Size: 67 inch
  • Item Weight: 18.5 lbs.
  • Material: Composite
  • Designed for: Beginners to veterans

Airhead’s devotion to making quality water gears is evident in their extensive and various catalog.

The S-1300 Combo Ski is one perfect example of their dedication. Anyone from beginners to expert water ski users would find this one easy to use.

Its 67-inch length and broad tails are the perfect combinations for a stable gear. Its favorable dimension would please anyone, including those that are picky when it comes to water gears.

Airhead considered the leveling up capabilities of their users. That’s why they made it easy for anyone to use so that it would scale with their skills quickly. You can use the S-1300 Combo Ski even if you don’t have any prior knowledge about water skiing, or if it’s your first time.

You will never worry about your safety because of the water ski’s compact and durable construction. It can withstand continuous and numerous use while maintaining its product quality. As a cherry on top, fiberglass reinforced nylon fins are present for more robust performance.

The fiberglass installation is present with durability in mind. Expect Airhead S-1300 Combo Ski to last for a long time.

Sizes 5 to 12 are welcome to use the S-1300 Combo Ski, all thanks to its slide-type adjustable bindings.

This water ski delivers a package no other company can bring. Its top-notch materials would put your mind at ease; you’ll never think about damaging your equipment anymore. The S-1300 Combo Ski also features a stylish design that is both trendy and useful.

The equipment’s pocket template ensures full control over acceleration when facing any water condition. Aside from that, you’ll have more control over the ski’s design and color with its different selection. However, Airhead S-1300 Combo Ski is only available in one flexible size.

Small and medium boat wakes are the ideal pairing for this particular water ski. Although it can also withstand large and strong ones, it isn’t a recommended practice to do.

Perhaps the best feature that the water ski possesses is its large and fat topmost part. It is essential for keeping air off the wake.

Airhead S-1300 Combo Ski is a mashup of greatness that turned out well. Its almost daring qualities and functionalities paid off, that makes it the best option for water ski users of different levels.

Its body composition and type makes it easier for tricks to pull off, even if you’re only learning. Veterans might find themselves having more control on the equipment while doing tricks.

With its promise to cater to different skill levels, the Airhead S-1300 Combo Ski has a reasonable price that stands out among its contemporaries.

ProsCons
Extensive color and design selectionNot ideal for big wake boats
Offers perfect balance and control
Limited to one size
Beginner-friendly
Heavy
Strong nylon fins
Flexible design

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#2. Celebrity Combo Waterski by O’Brien – Best for non-lightweight users

Celebrity Combo Waterski by O'Brien

Specifications:

  • Size: 68″
  • Weight: 22 lbs.
  • Designed for: Beginners to intermediate

O’Brien is the leading water sports gear provider with more than 50 years of experience. The company is also responsible for creating remarkable and iconic wakeboards, skis, wake surfboards, etc.

The O’Brien Celebrity Combo Waterski is a perfect example of their design principle and builds capabilities. The designers in O’Brien spends too much time to arrive in a functional and quality design. It is evident in this particular water ski.

The X-7 adjustable bindings make it a lot easier for size switching, which then offers more for people with different feet size. Beginner ski users would find it easy and comfortable to maneuver, and even for intermediate users, too.

The O’Brien Celebrity Combo Waterski has an added rear toe-piece that is also adjustable. Aside from that, this feature allows the equipment to function as a single board, a perfect alternative for intermediate and veteran users.

For speed concerns, you’ll find yourself cruising even in wild waters smoothly and quickly with the water ski’s plastic fins. The light material is also durable, so you don’t need to worry a lot about overusing the O’Brien Celebrity Combo Waterski.

The design for the fins is for safety and security. It is a rounded plastic design that would please anyone’s eye.

The designers in O’Brien aims to reduce the drag force of water by using this equipment. To arrive in that feature, they use a faster and flatter rocker line. The water drag force reduction is significant for intermediate and veteran users to reduce the tiredness it may induce when used for a long time.

As an addition to the drag force reduction, the surface area of the equipment has changed. It’s now more narrow when compared to other models. It also helps in acceleration and added control.

O’Brien Celebrity Combo Waterski features tips with V entry. This cool looking feature isn’t only intended for design purposes but is also an aid for traversing tough waters and severe water conditions. It also makes your cruising stable without any drawbacks.

Lightweight water ski users may find it hard to use the O’Brien Celebrity Combo Waterski. There are, however, more skis made by O’Brien that are for this user classification.

The O’Brien Celebrity Combo Waterski is a masterpiece in disguise, with only little disadvantages visible. Its unique dual tunnel design makes it a lot worth it to buy.

ProsCons
Many useful featuresNot applicable for lightweight users
Unique construction
Limited design and color options
Adjustable bindings
Narrow design
Lightweight
Nylon fins

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#3. Supersport Combo Waterski by CWB – Best for Kids

Supersport Combo Waterski by CWB

Specifications:

  • Size: 55″
  • Weight: 9 lbs.
  • Designed for: Kids

CWB is known for engineering shape sensitive water gears to make things fun and easy for anyone. The CWB Supersport Combo Waterskis is best known for its build specially made for children.

Both skis have strong bases that make buying a package a lot worth it when compared to other options. Its reinforced composite is the one responsible for making the base durable. Advanced riders may worry less about excessive use because of the equipment’s build quality.

If you’re an adult, then this is not the pair of skis for you. Kids may enjoy using this equipment, provided that they are under 135 pounds. Kids, especially beginners, may experience comfort more than anything else with the gear’s 300 square inches length.

The CWB Supersport Combo Waterskis has nylon made out of glass for stability and precision. It is essential to teach your kids the proper way of skiing at a very young age while at the same time keeping themselves safe and secure.

If you’re a parent, you don’t need to worry about your kid’s safety and security. An installed slide-adjustable binding will take care of the rest.

The binding, however, may find it hard to attach to kids with very narrow feet. You might want to consider your options if your kid’s feet fall under that category.

For beginners, the CWB Supersport Combo Waterskis offers a front stabilizer bar. This part is essential for keeping both skis in control and entirely apart from each other.

The bar is an excellent addition, especially for parents who are looking for a pair of water skis for their beginner kids. It acts as the extra pair of wheels on the backside of a bike.

The stabilizer bar makes the equipment a beginner pair of skis as well as a transitional gear to go into an intermediate difficulty.

The equipment also allows the removal of the front stabilizer, and its purpose is for intermediate or expert ski users. It is essential, especially if the kids are trying to attempt tricks that require skills to pull off.

The CWB Supersport Combo Waterskis is perfect for young water sport enthusiasts that want to learn for an extended period because of its durable and quality build.

ProsCons
Equipped with front stabilizerLimited design and color choice
Broad body for stability
Not for expert and adult riders
Nylon fin made of glass
Limited to kids use
Adjustable bindings
Durable base

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#4. Reactor Combo Water Skis by O’Brien – Best Expert Water Ski

Reactor Combo Water Skis by O'Brien

Specifications:

  • Size: 67″
  • Weight: 17.5 lbs
  • Designed for: Experts

O’Brien made it once again into this list because of its diverse water ski equipment selection. This time, however, the O’Brien Reactor Combo Water Skis are for expert and veteran users. If you’re one of them, then you’re lucky as we’re diving in the best features of the Reactor Combo Water Skis.

This particular water gear is perfect for male skiers, but of course, females may also use it. The product users who want to have a challenge

Starting from its thin profile, only those with enough experience may be able to use this properly. Its longer length of 67 inches also helps well when it comes to adding more difficulty for the user itself.

Even if the O’Brien Reactor Combo Water Skis is for people who want a challenge, doing tricks is relatively more comfortable when using this one when compared to its competitors in the market.

If you find yourself using this product for so many times, you’ll eventually ignore the limitations that it has.

Bindings should always be in skis, no matter how difficult it is. They go well with one another, and water ski without a proper binding wouldn’t work the way it should be.

Good thing though, the Reactor Combo has 700-Adjustable bindings, which helps any water ski users a lot. The adjustable bind is also catering for foot sizes, from 4.5 to 13.

For the product’s fin, you’ll easily spot a standard plastic and nylon combination. It makes it easier for you to maneuver any water you’re in easily. Lakes wouldn’t be a problem at all when you use the O’Brien Reactor Combo Water Skis.

While it may have limited dimensions, it doesn’t lack in terms of speed. You may find yourself effortlessly speeding through the waters without worrying about a fall.

The O’Brien Reactor Combo Water Skis is the dream product for professional and veteran skiers. Its stability, precision, and build type is among the best, and you’ll never run into any safety problem with this one.

ProsCons
Flexible and adjustable 700 bindingLimited to experts
Enables safe stunts
Hard to use
Strong plastic fin
Too narrow
Easy tracking
High speed

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#5. Blast Combo HS/RTS by HO Sports – Best for Your Budget

Blast Combo by HO Sports

Specifications:

  • Size: 59″
  • Weight: 17.5 lbs.
  • Designed for: Beginners to intermediate

HO Sports is famous for its appearance in many magazines, including Esquire. Their exquisite build and careful attention to details put them in a very high spot in the water ski market.

The HO Sports Blast Combo HS/RTS is a pair of skis that can be enjoyed by many, including beginners who don’t have prior knowledge with water skiing.

Experts and veterans may also enjoy using this gear because of its many features that would make practicing a lot easier and safer.

Its safe and straightforward build removes any type of worries that the user would feel. The bottom design, in particular, makes it a lot easier to maneuver, offering a different take in precision and stability.

Precision is an essential feature that a pair of water ski must possess. Almost all experts prefer water ski equipment that has perfect accuracy because most of them use it in competitions and tournaments. It will be hard if the gear isn’t responding to what you are telling it to do.

You will also be surprised by how strong the bottom side of the equipment is. Aside from this, you would find it a lot easier to get back on your feet or to avoid falling.

Although it may take a lot of time and practice never to fall again, this particular equipment might help you reduce that time. Practicing would also be a lot easier when you use this because of how its features and capabilities.

When it comes to buoyancy, the HO Sports Blast Combo HS/RTS stands out among the rest of the water ski options in the market. Its high lightness is perfect for keeping anyone afloat.

If you don’t want laced-up boots, then this gear is the perfect one for you. HO Sport’s water ski features an adjustable horse-shoe boot.

The HO Sports Blast Combo HS/RTS is a budget-friendly pair of water ski that delivers its promises precisely. Although it has several shortcomings, its positive sides overcome these issues that later vanishes into thin air.

ProsCons
Strong bottom part
Limited design option
Budget-friendly
No laced-up boots
Beginner-friendly
Limited stocks
High buoyancy
Stable to use

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#6. Hydroslide Legend Adult Deluxe Waterskis by Nash – Best for Stunts

Hydroslide Legend Adult Deluxe Waterskis by Nash

Specifications:

  • Size: 68″
  • Weight: 9 lbs.
  • Designed for: Experts and veterans

Nash is capable of producing high-quality skis without sacrificing its product’s price tag. It is evident in their Hydroslide Adult variant.

The product itself is no doubt in excellent condition and highly capable of doing various feats. Adult professional ski users favor this product a lot because it is for them.

Its materials are durable that guarantee its users a long life span. Given that skis are expensive, this should be enough to encourage professional riders to buy them.

The Hydroslide Legend Adult Deluxe Waterskis offers stability and speed all together while making sure that the user is safe from harsh falling.

Stunts are very easy to pull-off using this water gear because of their build type and architecture. The design makes it easier for you to turn around and perform unbelievable tricks that are impossible to other pairs of skis.

The design, however, isn’t sacrificed a lot because the designers made it appealing to the masses. You can also choose different colors that would suit your personality or lifestyle.

The balance between design is perfect, and you’ll praise this one a lot in terms of both.

Riders of more than 120 pounds are the target of the Hydroslide Legend Adult Deluxe Waterskis. It also implies that beginners and children should not try this one. If you want something for your kid or anyone in the age group, you should find another variant that is for them.

The designers of Nash considers the safety and security of its users. It is the reason why they included an adjustable function to their bindings. Its also meant to be a sliding feature, so anyone will find it easy to operate.

Bindings are always necessary and should always be in any skis. It should be your number one concern when choosing your pair of water skis.

The Hydroslide Legend Adult Deluxe Waterskis is the best and ideal pair of water skis for experts with its build quality, stability, and price range.

ProsCons
Perfect for stunts
Limited to users over 120 pounds
Secure bindings
Limited to experts and veterans
Excellent design
Not beginner-friendly
Durable
Stable

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#7. Full Throttle Traditional Combination Skis by Absolute Outdoor – Best for Families​

Full Throttle Traditional Combination Skis by Absolute Outdoor

Specifications:

  • Size: 68″
  • Weight: 7 lbs.
  • Designed for: Beginners to intermediate

The Full Throttle Traditional Combination Skis is a hybrid of speed, precision, and durability. All of these features are what make the product ahead among the rest pair of skis in the market.

It’s easy to use, and the beginner-friendly approach makes it the top pick for the best family-friendly pair of skis. Kids that are in perfect age of water skiing may enjoy using this product. If you’re a parent, there’s no need to worry about the safety or your children because of the product’s binding feature.

Adults might find skiing easy and fun when they use it, even beginners who haven’t tried water skiing before.

The Full Throttle Traditional Combination Skis is also guaranteed to function well despite multiple numbers of users. It’s more than just durable, but it’s stable that it may even surpass its lifespan. These are all made possible by the product’s body composition, which is mainly steel.

The designers opt in the steel injection path to make things a lot easier.

The bottom of both skis are both concave, and together with its beveled edges, the equipment is the perfect pair of skis for precise maneuvering in different water types.

As an addition, its tapered tail is also responsible for giving the product its trademark maneuvering capabilities. It also enables any size of wake boats to pull the product. This flexibility is a rare thing to see in water pair skis. Most products in the market only focus on small wake boats; that’s why.

The Full Throttle Traditional Combination Skis also provides a flexible binding that allows users with up to 12 feet size. The adjustable bindings are also the ones responsible for allowing even kids to use the pair of skis.

With Full Throttle Traditional Combination Skis’ product innovation, it cemented itself as the best family pick for the pair of water skis. Its design principle also suits any personality which isn’t in any way limiting.

ProsCons
Tapered tail to give users more control
Weighs a lot because of its body type
Concave bottom for added maneuver
Unclear warranty description
Beveled edges for smoother sailing
A limited number of stocks
Steel body type
Good for kids

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Top Pick – Best Water Ski

The S-1300 Combo Ski by Airhead made it into our top list because of the product’s capabilities to deliver the best water ski experience. The company is also responsible for making such a right product, with the help of their devotion and expertise when it comes to making water gears.

The equipment is also offering itself to all types of users, from beginners to experts. Everything is not even a stretch because there is so much evidence that backs up the product’s claim.

Airhead’s S-1300 Combo Ski is your number one choice when it comes to water skis with the best design, flexibility, and control.


Great Summer Event Invention: Water Ski History

It was in June 1922 that Ralph Samuelson thought the idea of skiing on water. He argued that if skiing is possible in snowy terrains, then it would also apply to water. The 18-year-old from Minnesota then tried his idea with his brother on July 2, 1922, just a month after his first idea came out. His brother, Ben Samuelson, is the one responsible for operating the boat where Ralph connected himself.

The two brothers attempted several times until they finally arrived perfectly to ski on water successfully. They observed that doing a backward lean would keep you afloat the water. This discovery then marks the invention of now-famous water skiing.

On the first trials and attempts of the Samuelson brothers, Ralph used a ski that is for snow. After several tries, Ralph is always sinking, so he thought that it isn’t possible to continue using the equipment. He then moved to use barrel staves, but again, he’s not successful.

Ralph initially got an idea about the boat’s speed, which means that he needs a gear that is wide to cover a large water surface. He then proceeded and obtained planks that measure 8 ft. in length and 9 inches in width.

After several failed attempts, he added more accessories to his water skiing gear to let it float. He made many adjustments to his prototype, but at last, he finally arrived in a solution. Ralph knew that the key to not falling is to lean backward.

With his success, he made it into a career and toured across America to perform water ski shows to teach his fellow citizens how to do the water sport. Aside from this, he also played the very first ski jump, which happened in 1925.

Despite having the success in discovering the waters sport, Ralph Samuelson never applied for a patent for his invention. Fred Waller from Huntington then seized this opportunity and filed his patent for his Dolphin AkwaSkees, a water ski made out of dried mahogany.

Waller is the one who took credit for the invention of the water ski equipment for years. In February 1966, however, the recognition was stripped away from Waller and transferred to Ralph Samuelson, and he was then the father of water skiing.


Selecting Your Water Ski – Buyers Guide

Water skiing is a popular water sport that requires specific gear. If you’re planning to get into this type of game or you’re only looking for another pair of water skis, then you are in good hands. There are a lot of different factors to consider when picking a couple of water ski, and we will help you arrive in a perfect decision in no time.

Skier Type

First off, the skier type is essential since there are a lot of them that are floating in the market. Here are some of the most common skier types, and do your best to identify which one is for you;

First-time

A first-timer doesn’t have any experience with water skiing. It is also evident because of the lack of stance and form.

Novice

A novice skier has a few experiences when it comes to using a pair of water skis. You’ll quickly know if you fall under this category if you prefer slower boat speeds and easy to use a couple of skis.

Intermediate

An intermediate skier uses water skiing as a hobby, and he/she may have already tried doing a couple of runs without failing. You’ll know if you fall under this category if you prefer slow speeds, somewhere around 25 – 30 MPH, and you’re still concerned when it comes to falling.

Advanced

An advanced skier excels well when it comes to skiing in pleasant water conditions. You’ll quickly know if you fall under this category if you’re already comfortable with faster speeds and you fall rarely.

Competition

A competition skier spends his/her time mostly practicing to perfect water skiing. You’ll quickly know if you fall under this type if you attend tournaments and competitions regularly.


Ride Types

Water skis come in different types of rides and shapes. There are a lot of them you can choose from, and each would depend on your usage or purpose.

Broad

Wide skis are ideal for beginners because of its water surface coverage. Traditional water skis aren’t like this, so make sure to find a specific one that is wide.

Shaped

Shaped skis are also ideal for beginners, but it can also be perfect for intermediate users. This one is a good mixture of broad and traditional ride type. It is suitable for picking this one if you’re highly unsure because of its provided stability and precision.

Traditional

If you’re an expert water skier, then this type is the most suitable for you. It is also the most capable board type to be used in practices and exercises related to water skiing.

World-class

Finally, this type is an exclusive pick for experts and competitors in the realm of water skiing. You should always pick this one if you still participate in tournaments and competitions.


Bindings

The binding is an essential part of any water skis. It should always correspond with your feet; that’s why it is crucial to know your feet size first before proceeding into picking a binding.

Binding Types

There are several types of bindings in the market then you can choose from, and here are some of them;

  • Front high wrap with rare toe plate: This is the ideal binding type for groups that are using the same water skis.
  • Double high-wrap: Binding type that is the best when it comes to stability and control.
  • Adjustable bindings: The most common binding type you can see in the market; also one of our recommended kind.

Conclusion

A pair of water skis should be durable. But even so, you still need to do your best when identifying the perfect pair of water skis for you.

You need to have a more comprehensive understanding of your needs and comparing it to what’s the best available in the market. Don’t be afraid to go technical and consult the internet if you have something in mind that you don’t understand.

Always keep in mind to pick the product with a warranty and the best durable build. The binding type should be the priority because of its association with the water skis.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q: What is the ideal speed for water skiing?

Your speed should always depend on your experience level and water ski equipment. For instance, beginners should always use wider skis and slower speeds to make learning a lot easier. The better you are when it comes to skiing, the faster you should be.

Q: Are laced-up ski boots dangerous?

The simple answer would be no— skis, which have laced-up boots to make you a lot safer. The reason why it is like that is for flexibility purposes. Beginners wouldn’t likely encounter laced-up boots because it is for intermediate users. If you’re starting, you’ll face horse-shoe type boots more often than the lace-up boots.

Q: What is the best wetsuit for waterskiing

Wetsuits should be tight yet still comfortable. Wetsuits should also be warm when it comes to the upper torso part. It should also offer more freedom in terms of movement as skiing is an activity that features a lot of it.

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